Archive for Booster Gold

Black and Gold


B.P.R.D.: The Black Goddess #3

While the Frogs and prehumans attack the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense and the US military outside the old Chinese monastery, Abe Sapien, Kate Corrigan, and Andrew Devon listen to Martin Gilfryd/Memnan Saa tell the story of his long, long life, driven to a madhouse in Victorian England, then embarking on a spiritual quest to Agartha, and finally ending up at the monastery, acknowledged as a spiritual leader and wizard with the ability to “tame fire to breed dragons.” Of course, this isn’t doing anyone outside the monastery much good — the Yetis are helping to beat back the Frogs and prehumans, but they’re not making enough progress, especially when the bad guys’ giant bug/robots show up. Looks like everyone’s done for… unless Memnan Saa really can call up dragons…

Verdict: Thumbs up. Lots of action here, lots of intrigue, lots of magic, lots of suspense, lots of just plain freaky stuff. I hope you’re reading and enjoying this as much as I am.


Booster Gold #18

Present Booster and Past Booster team up to track down the last time-knife back to ancient Egypt, where sorcerers are using it to drain the Blue Beetle scarab of all its energy. Meanwhile, Goldstar and Skeets confront the mysterious chronal-energy dude, who turns out to be the late Rex Hunter, evil Time Master wannabe, as he tries to destroy the scarab and do other evil stuff and, and… Pfah, heck with it. This stuff isn’t making a bit of sense right now.

Verdict: Thumbs down. Confused. And bored.

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Stories within Stories

PS238 #37

We get a break from some of the recent epic drama with a nice, relaxing transition story. The superpowered students have been given a creative writing assignment and are reading their only-somewhat-fictional stories to their classmates. The hyper-patriotic USA Patriot Act has a self-glorifying story that earns him the wrath of some of his classmates, Tyler Marlocke tells a story about the heroic and M.I.A. Moon Shadow (Tyler’s secret alter-ego), Toby Marlocke (Tyler’s superpowered clone) has a fantasy tale about the perils of great power, and Guardian Angel tells about her insecurities now that her powers don’t work right anymore, and Zodon recounts how his latest giant robot was a total failure… or was it? All that, plus preparations are being made for the school’s big soccer game against the rival Praetorian Academy, and Tyler has to decide whether he wants to become Moon Shadow again.

Verdict: Thumbs up. A nice breather before the upcoming drama with the villainous Praetorian Academy. The artwork is grand fun, too — two of Aaron Williams’ kids helped provide the drawings that accompany the superkids’ stories.

Booster Gold #17

Booster is still lost in time. He’s now stuck in the same time period when he literally ran over the Flash and Kid Flash with the Time Sphere, temporarily marooning them in time. Booster also has to contend with Chronos, a second mysterious time traveler, and the need to get a non-powered Barry Allen to a very important appointment with his origin story.

Verdict: Thumbs down. With two different Booster Golds and two different Barry Allens, this issue falls into a trap that a lot of time travel stories eventually run into — it’s just too danged confusing.

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All Hail the Blue Beetle!


Blue Beetle #35

The next-to-the-last issue of “Blue Beetle.”

After Jaime takes out a bunch of Ted Kord’s old rogues gallery, he heads off to a high school dance with his date, smokin’ hot magic girl Traci 13. And of course, the festivities get broken up by more villains — in this case, the Khaji-Da Revolutionary Army, a bunch of aliens wearing Reach armor like Jaime’s. They were all freed from the Reach’s mental control when Jaime destroyed the Reach a while back. Now they’re roaming the galaxy fighting against oppression. They want Jaime to lead them in the battle against oppression on Earth, which includes everyone from China and North Korea, to the United States and the Justice League. When Jaime tells them he’s not down with that, they don’t respond very well.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Lots of fun stuff here, including some nice spotlights for the outstanding supporting cast. Paco supports a pantsless society, by the way. Just one more issue to go, and I’m really going to miss this series.


Marvel Adventures: Super Heroes #7

Loki is trying to turn Thor, in his civilian guise as Donald Blake, into a snake by enchanting the lips of his girlfriend, Jane Foster. If she kisses him, he’ll change into whatever animal is closest to him, and they’re both visiting the zoo’s reptile house. Once Cobra frees all the snakes in the building, things get even more chaotic.

Verdict: Thumbs down. I normally love the “Marvel Adventures” comics, but this one just left me completely flat.


Booster Gold #16

Booster is trapped in Europe during World War I, facing off against the Enemy Ace, one of DC’s more interesting war heroes — he was based on the Red Baron, and though he opposed the Allies, he was considered an extremely honorable and ethical foe.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Enemy Ace is always an interesting character, and it’s fun to see him anywhere.

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War! On! Christmas!

DC Universe Holiday Special

This is DC’s annual holiday anthology, with lots of short stories about Superman, Aquaman, Commissioner Gordon, Blue Beetle, the Justice League, Dr. Light, Nightwing, Robin, Huntress, the Teen Titans, and more.

Verdict: Are the stories bad? No. Are the stories good. No, not really. Is it all worth the price on the cover? Well, the price on the cover is six bucks, and I gotta say, these stories are definitely not worth six bucks. Thumbs down.

Aww, but I don’t want to leave you with just that one bad review. Let’s review a couple of good comics real quick.

Ambush Bug: Year None #5

Ambush Bug works as a henchman for a low-rent supervillain called the Yellow Snow (Don’t eat him!) and discovers that all 52 of the Monitors are after him. Not that the Bug cares too much — he’s too busy traveling to the many alternate earths, including the sex-change world, the mirror universe, and Frank Miller World, where black bars cover up almost all of the dialogue. He learns that, though he managed to kill DC head honcho Dan DiDio last issue (Huzzah!), he’s alive again (Booo!) and controlling the multiverse to make everything dark and edgy and grim (Booo! Nonfiction!). Things are so bad that arch-villain Go-Go Chex tries to enlist Ambush Bug’s aid in putting down the menace of DiDio once and for all. But can anything stop the interstellar evil of Dan DiDio?

Verdict: Thumbs up. More silly jokes and visual gags. How great is it that this lengthy tribute to the evil of Dan DiDio is being published by DiDio’s comics company? Oh, and Keith Giffen better stay out of any small planes.

Booster Gold #15

We start off with Booster and Skeets preventing Goldstar, Booster’s sister, from posing for a certain famous painting of an enigmatically smiling woman by Leonardo da Vinci. After leaving 16th-century Italy, the time-jumping heroes discover that time has gotten all screwed up again. This time, they trace the disturbance back to the Gotham museum robbery from a few issues ago. Apparently, one particular knife was missing from the museum after the robbery — and when they return to the museum, Booster and Skeets are ambushed by the Elongated Man! Yay, Ralph Dibny! They have a nice team-up and almost catch the knife thief, but he escapes, and Booster ends up stranded on a ruined, muddy battlefield…

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s great to see Ralph in action again, and the rest of the story is good fun. Any story that can combine the Mona Lisa, the Elongated Man, and what appears to be a battlefield from World War I, is something that I’m pretty certain to enjoy.

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No Gold Stars

No time for a lot of reviews today, but let’s get at least one of ’em out of the way for now…

Booster Gold #14

Booster manages to escape from the vat of Starros he’d been dumped in last issue, then manages to shoot Lady Chronos with a freeze gun, the only thing that allows her to get free from the starfish that was controlling her. He learns that Starro conquered the world by filling the Justice League’s Hall of Justice with starfish, taking over all the heroes and villains, then having most of them kill each other. After agreeing to let Lady Chronos go after everything’s over, Booster goes back in time and steals one of Mr. Freeze’s cold guns (leading to one of the few really wonderful lines of this issue: “A magic hand took my freeze-gun!”). They’re eventually able to blow up Starro and stop mind-controlled Rip Hunter from infecting the world’s heroes with starfish drones. But Rip isn’t happy that Booster had to rely on help from Lady Chronos, claiming she’s still not to be trusted.

Verdict: Thumbs down, actually. Things were a bit confusing, a bit of a muddle, and a lot boring, which is not something we’ve previously seen from this particular comic book.

I’ll try to get a few more reviews done tomorrow, or the day after that, depending on how quickly I’m able to get some important chores finished…

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Infinite Political Crisis


DC Universe Decisions #3

Wonder Woman endorses a Republican candidate who’s a former soldier, while Superman saves a Democratic candidate from another bomb — and apparently, the candidate himself placed the bomb. Mind control again, obviously, but a particular kind of mind control. Oh, and Flash gets in trouble when, frustrated that the media only cares about superhero endorsements and not about the threats to the candidates, he endorses the mad bomber for the presidency. Huntress steals Lady Blackhawk’s endorsement rationale, Wonder Woman’s and Bruce Wayne’s candidate endorsements were mainly an excuse to get closer to the candidates to track down other suspects, Clark Kent is sleeping on the couch, and the assassin is finally revealed…

Verdict: I’m not sure. On one hand, the story is generally fine, the dialogue is mostly good, everything generally makes sense. On the other hand, when something goes wrong, it seems to hit EPIC FAIL. Wonder Woman’s endorsement of the Republican former soldier indicates that she only approves of him because he’s a “warrior” — fine, that’s a reason why that character might think favorably of someone, but we also know that Wondy is actually an ambassador for peace from the Amazons, so being a soldier wouldn’t be her only reason to pick a candidate. Besides, Wondy’s long-running status as a feminist icon, both in the comics’ continuity and in real world pop culture, would suggest that she’d certainly want assurances from a candidate that he’d be favorably inclined towards feminist issues. (But I gotta say, the Republican candidate makes a great speech — really excellent dialogue there.)

We also get some more superhero endorsements, and this time, there are more of them who support candidates because of issues — Blue Beetle supports a candidate who favors universal health care, and Jay Garrick likes the moderate GOP candidate because she’d “get big government off our backs, without getting us into another world war.” It’s nice to see some actual issues being cited, instead of the same old shallow stuff.

Oh, and the big bad assassin? Last time I checked, he had become a good guy. Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy.


Booster Gold #13

Booster, Skeets, and Goldstar save the life of a single woman in a tremendous disaster, because she was the only person who’d been fated to live. When they return to Rip Hunter’s HQ, they discover that Rip has been taken over by a Starro spore! He gets away in his time sphere and changes history so that the entire world has been dominated by Starro for centuries. They foil the initial plot, but Rip gets away, and soon they’re attacked by a bunch of Starro-dominated supervillains. Can Booster get away without getting a mind-controlling starfish slapped over his face?

Verdict: Thumbs up. The giant Starro the Conqueror may have been a middleweight villain, but the little Starro starfish are just plain wonderful bad guys.

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Who’s that Girl?

Booster Gold #12

Last issue, Booster’s plan was to beat Batman while posing as Killer Moth. Unfortunately, that just made the time glitch even worse, so the new plan is for Booster to pose as Batman and stop Killer Moth — who, remember, is also Booster. Got a headache yet? Booster and his sister Goldstar pay a visit to the Batcave, but they’re attacked by a shotgun-wielding Alfred. They manage to escape with the Batmobile, but they’re not able to get one of Batman’s costumes, so instead, they stop by the home of Commissioner Gordon and his daughter Barbara, where Goldstar steals a Batgirl costume. Booster still needs a disguise, since if his previous self sees himself wearing his regular costume, it’ll cause more time glitches, plus it’ll make readers’ time travel headaches even worse. So instead, Booster disguises himself as Elvis. So Elvis-Booster beats Moth-Booster, the time traveler gets his loot, goes back into the past, endows a children’s hospital, and all is made right with the timestream. I think. Man, it’s hard to say with time travel.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Yes, it’s full of confusing time paradoxes, but dang it, that’s what good time travel stories are all about.

The Goon #28

While the Goon puts the muscle on the lowlifes in town to make sure they’re not working with Labrazio. And Charley Mudd has been driven a bit ’round the bend by the death of his brother. He hallucinates that a tree stump is actually his brother Bill. When he finds out that a low-level gang leader named Joey the Ball (his hand is stuck in a bowling ball) was behind the murder of his brother, Charley pays him a visit and kills him and his hench-zombies with the stump. And the Buzzard has captured the blinded and humilated Zombie Priest after learning his True Name and forcing his loyalty. The story culminates in a grand finale in which the Goon meets up with a lowlife renting out his mule for, um, deviant purposes… so the Goon beats the stuffing out of the poor mule to make sure the guy won’t be able to make any more money off of it. Poor mule.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Mule beatings, stump murders, and Franky kicking a cat with a human face. Solid gold!

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Turbo Booster

Booster Gold #11

The timeline has gotten screwed up again. Because of a criminal time-traveler’s interference during a museum robbery by Killer Moth, Batman, Robin, and Batgirl have ceased to exist. Booster, Skeets, Rip Hunter, and Booster’s formerly-dead-but-now-alive twin sister Goldstar are on the case, and decide that what caused the chronal chaos was Batman capturing Killer Moth. So to make sure Moth gets away, Booster mugs him, dresses up in his costume, stages the heist, and knocks out the crimefighters. Unfortunately, Booster’s stunt has made Killer Moth look like an unstoppable criminal, which has pushed him into becoming a Batman-like defender of Gotham City’s underworld. How to fix things this time? Booster is going to have to masquerade as the Dark Knight himself. But that’s easier said than done…

Verdict: Thumbs up. Old-school Bat-folks! And Skeets gets to run around with little-bitty moth wings while Booster’s disguised as Killer Moth, so extra points for Teh Cute.

Number of the Beast #8

I missed the final issue of this miniseries a while back, but finally got it picked up. There’s a lot less emphasis on the Paladins and a lot more focus on the heroes of the Wildstorm Universe, including the Authority, Majestic, StormWatch, and the WildC.A.T.S. trying to fight off the army of clones of the High, the mega-powerful anti-hero. They manage to put a few of the clones down and lose a few heroes (most of them being stray members of the Paladins). In the end, the High clones fly up into the upper atmosphere and blow themselves up like bipedal nukes. Crisis over? Actually, no. A hundred nukes blowing up in the atmosphere? Now the planet’s off its axis, the moon has been destroyed, and 90% of Earth’s population is dead. Wow, way to completely shake up the Etch-a-Sketch, Wildstorm…

Verdict: I’m a bit up in the air about this one. I respect any comic company willing to change their universe so drastically, but Wildstorm was already pretty dark and morally-conflicted — how much darker can they make things? And it’s really hard for me to believe that the Authority, who’ve already saved the planet from gods, would manage to get skunked so severely by a bunch of doofy clones. And heck, I wish we’d seen some more of the Paladins. I liked those dudes…

Captain America #41

The Red Skull’s schemes march on. The fake Captain America is recaptured, and plans are made to assassinate a few presidential candidates. But the evil Dr. Faustus has decided to betray the Skull, help Sharon Carter escape, and lead the forces of S.H.I.E.L.D. to the Skull’s doorstep. And of course, Cap, the Falcon, the Black Widow, and more are on hand to help out.

Verdict: I gotta give this a thumbs down. It’s not that things are particularly convoluted. It’s more that Captain America doesn’t really do very much here. He gets a couple of great moments at the end of the issue, but by and large, it’s the bad guys’ scheming and betrayals that move all the action. Cap generally watches from the sidelines. And I’m really getting a mite tired of this unending storyline by now.

Jonah Hex #34

Hex has decided to reform. He buries his guns and his old Confederate uniform, builds a house, and avoid people so he won’t get in any trouble on their behalf. And naturally, a bunch of toughs ride into the nearby town to raise some hell. A pretty shopkeeper’s daughter tries to enlist Hex’s aid by bringing him pie (Amazingly, he discards the pie. Who can resist pie?!) and having sex with him (He discards the girl afterwards, too. The cad!). But Hex is a hard-hearted cuss, and he stays out of trouble up until he finds out that the girl and her family have been killed by the crooks. After that, there’s nothing left but shooting a few hellraising mooks in the face.

Verdict: Thumbs down. I like the concept of Hex trying to lie low, stay out of trouble, and lead a life without gunslinging, but the dialogue just plain cheesed me off. They made Jonah Hex talkative and poetic and downright dadgummed loquacious. People, people, people, you do not take a grim, taciturn gunslinger who’s basically modeled on Clint Eastwood’s Man with No Name and turn him into a chatterbox. You just do not do that.

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Back to the Future


Booster Gold #1,000,000

Well, Booster’s time-traveling has already taken him back to DC’s “Zero Hour” crossover — time for him to visit the distant future of the year 85,271. That’s the date of another crossover called “DC One Million,” set one million months after “Action Comics #1.” Anyway, Booster and Skeets get caught up in a timestorm in the aftermath of Ted Kord returning to the past to be killed, and they end up getting a front row seat for the self-promotional theatrics of a guy named Peter Platinum, who reacts angrily when he sees Booster. Apparently, he decided to take Booster’s previous fame-mongering antics to their ultimate point. They don’t interact together long before Rip Hunter appears in his time sphere to fetch Booster and to confiscate Peter Platinum’s stolen costume and time technology.

After returning to the present, Booster, frustrated by Ted’s death and the constant lectures from Rip, quits and goes back to solo superhero duty. He and Skeets run into the Royal Flush Gang in Las Vegas and is in the process of mopping them up when Green Lantern and Green Arrow arrive to help… and also to accuse him of setting up the Gang’s robbery as publicity for himself. He also get a priority message from Batman, who demands to meet with him. Expecting yet another lecture, he is instead surprised to learn that Bats thinks Booster’s been doing a great job, because he learned that he went time traveling to try to keep Barbara Gordon from being paralyzed. He returns to helping Rip, who rewards him with a new teammate. And we also learn a little unexpected info about Rip Hunter’s family life…

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s really cool how much fun this series has been. Of course, it’s going to continue, but without Geoff Johns at the helm. Can it continue being cool? Let’s hope so. Speaking of cool, the “DC One Million” gimmick is pretty nifty here — if only they coulda gotten Grant Morrison to write it, like he did for most of the One Million crossovers back in ’98…


Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #16

First time I’ve picked this one up — it’s the all-ages comic version of the recent “Legion of Super-Heroes” cartoon series. And this one stars a character called “Arm-Fall-Off Boy,” a character who appeared in the original LSH comic back in ’89. His one and only power — he can detach his limbs and use them as clubs. Yeah, whooo. Unsurprisingly, he was rejected for Legion membership. Anyway, this issue focuses on Arm-Fall-Off Boy, or Floyd Belkin, who dreams of membership in the Legion and idolizes Phantom Girl, who he imagines is the most tolerant and least judgemental. However, as is revealed during a battle against a very slimy and see-through monster on an alien planet, Phantom Girl is actually incredibly squeamish about gross and icky stuff, which would certainly include AFO Boy’s detachable arms. However, Floyd still manages to come through when times are tough, defeating a supervillain named Starfinger. But will his feats of derring-do still be enough to get him into the Legion?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Floyd is a really charming and amusing character, and he comes up with some pretty funny ways to use his very limited superpowers. And Starfinger is a really funny character, setting up his evil headquarters in a local department store because he can’t afford a fancy media center like they have in their TV department, and waving enthusiastically at Arm-Fall-Off Boy’s disembodied arm.

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Trashed Trinity


Trinity #3

There’s a big battle between the Justice League and Konvikt and Graak, in which the JLA gets its collective clock cleaned. Then Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman show up, and Supes gets knocked out with one punch. Everyone, a big round of applause for the World’s Greatest Superheroes! Meanwhile, in the backup story, a woman named Tarot, who’s discovered that she reads Tarot cards way more accurately than she can believe, gets attacked by a gang and defended by some unseen monster.

Verdict: Thumbs down. Three issues in, and I’m bored silly. Besides pointing up the complete lameness of the current Justice League roster, just about half of the length of this comic is taken up with the backup feature. And the backup is fine, but it definitely doesn’t include any mention of Superman, Batman, or Wonder Woman. This is an ongoing problem with DC’s books, especially their mini- and maxi-series — they don’t have enough story or plot to fill out six issues or 12 issues or 52 issues, so they pad it with extra, unrelated stuff. If they can’t figure out enough plot, either do shorter series, or don’t waste their readers’ cash. And I’m definitely not wasting my cash on this one anymore.


Tiny Titans #5

Well, the Tiny Titans meet up with the Teen Titans East — the more recent, villainous version from the regular comics. Of course, they’re all good friends here, but I couldn’t help getting a little creeped out that they were hanging out with Inertia, who helped kill the last Kid Flash. Anyway, this issue’s activities included Enigma pestering Speedy with knock-knock jokes, Robin — or Nightwing — deciding what name he wanted to use, and Batgirl teaming up with Nightwing and a penguin to impersonate Batman.

Verdict: Other than my squeamishness about having a psycho like Inertia repurposed as a childhood buddy, I’m giving it a thumbs up. This is a great, fun series.


Green Lantern Corps #25

After a fairly terrific battle that featured gravity being boosted around the Green Lantern Corps members while they were pelted with thousands of alien corpses, everyone discovers that “Mother Mercy,” the queen bee of the Black Mercy plants, is actually a good guy. We get an origin of the Black Mercies, originally created specifically to bring happiness and contentment throughout the galaxy, even if the plants were sometimes commandeered by Mongul to further his evil schemes. However, the newest version of Mongul has collected a bunch of Black Mercies, re-engineered them to generate pure fear, and distributed them all over the place. Of course, Mongul is still nearby, and he still has some nasty plans…

Verdict: Thumbs up. Nothing particularly important going on here, but it’s good readin’.


Booster Gold #10

Frankly, it’s all a bit hectic, but the general gist of the whole thing has Booster’s reunited Justice League fighting his dad’s evil Time Stealers. Booster is in danger of fading from the timestream due to his temporal meddling, and it’s revealed that Booster’s dad is actually being mentally controlled by the evil Venusian brainworm Mr. Mind, who Booster fought during the “52” series. And in the end, Ted Kord has to die to fix time, just like we always knew would happen.

Verdict: Ehh, I’m on the fence on this one. It’s a bit too hectic, and a lot of interesting stuff from previous issues gets abandoned. With Superman, Batman, and the Martian Manhunter hanging around, all the bad guys shoulda been toast in about 10 seconds. But I liked Mr. Mind’s return, and I’m looking forward to the next issue, with Booster hanging out in the 853rd century.

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